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In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day: How to Survive and Thrive When Opportunity Roars Paperback – October 16, 2006

4.7 out of 5 stars 520 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day

“A thoughtful and energetic leader, Mark Batterson presses us to consider how we live out our faith in the world around us. When Mark has something to say, I am quick to listen.”
-Frank Wright, PhD, President and CEO, National Religious Broadcasters

“Mark Batterson is one of the outstanding younger leaders in the U.S. today. As a pastor, he demonstrates his gifts and character in leadership and preaching. As a writer, he communicates wisdom and hope with both energy and clarity.”
-Brian McLaren, Author and activist

“As a leader and teacher, Mark Batterson brings imagination, energy, and insight. Mark’s genuine warmth and sincerity spill over into his communication, combining an intense love for his community with a passionate desire to see them living the life God dreams for them. I appreciate his willingness to take bold risks and go to extraordinary lengths to reach our culture with a message that is truly relevant.”
-Ed Young, Senior pastor, Fellowship Church 

“Mark Batterson is one of the church’s most forward thinkers. In this book, he compels us to look both behind and ahead to discover answers to the ‘whys’ in our lives. In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day helps us make sense of this beautiful mess we call life.”
-Lindy Lowry, Editor, Outreach magazine

“Mark Batterson is down-to-earth and humble—yet constantly pushes me to grow. I follow him as a leader, admire him as an innovator, and love him as a friend. Mark has become one of the most important voices for a new generation. Anything he touches changes lives. Read this book and you’ll see what I mean.”
-Craig Groeschel, Pastor of Lifechurch.tv, author of Chazown and Confessions of a Pastor

“Mark’s passion for God and our generation is contagious. His writing is honest and insightful. Go ahead—chase the lion!”
-Margaret Feinberg, Author of What the Heck Am I Going to Do With My Life?

About the Author

Mark Batterson serves as lead pastor of National Community Church ( www.theaterchurch.com ) in Washington DC . Targeting emerging generations, 73 percent of NCCers are single twentysomethings that live or work on Capitol Hill. Currently one church with three locations, the vision of NCC is to meet in movie theaters @ metro stops throughout the DC area. The theaterchurch.com podcast is one of the fastest-growing church podcasts in America . Mark is also a daily blogger @ www.markbatterson.com . Mark lives on Capitol Hill with his wife, Lora, and three children.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Multnomah; 5474th edition (October 16, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1590527151
  • ISBN-13: 978-1590527153
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (520 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,311 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By C. Schefer on November 6, 2006
Format: Paperback
I thought this book would be a quick read. However, each chapter is so packed with revelation and wisdom it takes time, well spent, to take it all in. There are a few themes that have really stayed with me as I have read this book:

God will turn my bad break into a big break!

Do the best with what you have where you are!

When it comes to God, there are no degrees of difficulty!

If we learn from our mistakes, there is no failure (my favorite)!

Faith is embracing the uncertainties of life!

No problem = no miracle!!

The more challenges we face, the more God can use us!

CHASE THE LION!!!!!
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Format: Paperback
Chase the lion!

That is the recurring theme that stalks and roars at readers as they consume the meat of Mark Batteron's new book "In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day."

Alright, enough with the lion jokes.

Based on an obscure passage in the Old Testament book of 2 Samuel (23:29,30) Mark Batterson challenges his readers to face the lions in their lives head on with courage and faith. He centers his book on the story of an Israelite warrior who encounters a lion in a pit on a snowy day. The twist is that rather than running away from the lion as most people would be prone to do, this courageous solider jumps into the pit and kills it.

It is a bold move, a fearless and counter-intuitive act. And it is an act that perfectly illustrates the kind of life Batterson believes should be the norm for people who follow Jesus Christ. People whom Mark labels: lion chasers.

The majority of the book is built on the seven skills that Batterson believes will help people "climb out of the slipperiest pits and chase the biggest lions." These skills are: overcoming adversity, unlearning fears, embracing uncertainty, calculating risks, seizing opportunities, defying odds, and looking foolish.

Each of the chapters in the book highlights one of the seven skills and describes how it applies to a life of lion chasing. The chapters are easy to read and the main points in each one are clear and well illustrated. Using an effective blend of intellect, humor, candor and Scripture he artfully makes his case for the necessity and development of each skill. Coupled with a writing style that is both easily understandable and doable, Batterson provides his readers with needed insights on how to develop the 7 habits of highly effective lion chasing.
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Format: Paperback
In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day

I wanted to like this book. And, to be honest, I do like this book. On the whole, it is a book written to challenge you to overcome your fears and live a bold life. As a self-help, motivational book, Mark Batterson has produced a good one.

Except that he does not claim to have just generated a self-help book. In fact, he puts forth his book as based in Scripture. He takes the title from the story of Benaiah in 2 Samuel 23:20-23. Benaiah was the captain of the bodyguard of King David of Israel. This passage is the introdcution to Benaiah, who is also instrumental in establishing King Solomon's reign and whose father was Jehoiada the chief priest (1 Chronicles 27:5).

In the 2 Samuel passage, Benaiah's feat of killing a lion in a pit on a snowy day is recorded. Batterson cites the New Living Translation that renders Benaiah's action as "chasing" the lion into the pit. That's the only major translation I can find that uses "chase." The rest use "went down." Which is probably more faithful to the original Hebrew. That, though, poses difficulties for Batterson's entire hypothesis. His view in this book is that good, courageous Christian people chase lions, pursue the danger and overcome it.

If Benaiah only "went down," then it's a totally different lesson. That lesson is this: do the job in front of you as best you can, no matter how terrifying.

Here is my problem: Batterson has taken a good idea and then searched Scripture for a story he considers obscure, picks the translation that supports his hypothesis, and then presents the book as normative for the Christian life. He fills the book with stories of people going out of their comfort zones and how the experiences are priceless for them.
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Format: Paperback
Now here's a metaphor that resonates with me. Ever wrestled one of life's lions? Still have the wounds and scars to prove it? Do you, even years later, feel battered and beaten by the experience? If so, Mark Batterson has an incredble message for you. He certainly had an incredible message for me!

To quote Madison Avenue and Snickers, "Sometimes life comes at you fast." Mark's message is that everything that is happening now and has happened in the past are invaluable tools to help us reach the the glorious potential God desires for us.

...And if you haven't exactly squared off with one of life's great lions yet, this book with undoubtedly inspire you to become a lion chaser!

Mark has a profound gift for communicating spiritual truth in a way that really, really resonates. I cannot begin to articulate how marvelous this book is. What a wonderful read!
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